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DJs of the Year: Beautiful Swimmers Demonstrate the Power of Collaboration in Club Culture

To look back on this long year, we’re paying tribute to some of the people who shaped the look, sound, and feeling of club culture in 2016. Today, Beautiful Swimmers are THUMP’s 2016 DJs of the Year. The art of DJing is a nebulous and malleable thing, but most of us step into clubs weekend after weekend hoping for some kind of stability amidst the world’s disjointedness. And that’s why

The 25 Best Experimental Albums of 2016

Free Radicals is THUMP’s column dedicated to experimental electronic music. Each month, we take a look at the trends emerging from the frayed fringes of the dancefloor and why they’re meaningful. Electronic instrumentation offers near-endless possibilities to experimentalists. Over the course of this year, I’ve written in this column about hazy beatmakers who use geographical signifiers to interrogate rising tides of nationalism worldwide; about noise producers adopting classic rock tropes

How Bad Brains Created the Best Funk Metal Album 30 Years Ago

Calling Bad Brains influential to late-20th century rock music is like calling Abraham influential to Western religion. Henry Rollins may have never joined a band if it wasn’t for lead singer H.R. stage-diving onto him in 1985; The Beastie Boys wouldn’t have had the guts to transition from punk to hip-hop had they not witnessed Bad Brains’ subversion of racial stereotypes; the drums on “Smells Like Teen Spirit” would’ve lacked

The Best Electronic Albums of 2016

Illustration by Dana Kim Never question the efficacy of a great album. Dance singles offer concentrated dopamine hits and lengthy mixes offer IV drips of all sorts of pleasant neurotransmitters, but 2016’s vast slate of electronic full-lengths, while sometimes more gradual in their effects, are no less life-altering. Afforded the opportunity to take up a little more space, producers made a number of complex statements, offering up electro-protest anthems, rose-tinted

We'll Never Forget the Music and Lives of the Oakland Fire Victims

A memorial for victims of the Oakland fire (Photo via StreetMachina/Instagram) The American underground scene is mourning after a fire roared through the Ghost Ship artist collective in Oakland last Friday, killing 36 people who had gathered for a show featuring artists from the Los Angeles label 100% Silk. Lost in the inferno were accomplished local DJs, producers and musicians, visual artists, beloved members of the city’s queer community, sound

The Best Electronic Tracks of 2016

Illustration by Dana Kim Despite occasionally feeling like a trip through a dishwasher filled with swamp water, 2016 managed to cough up a handful of musical gems from the murk. This was not a year for muted introspection, but for throwing back your head and letting it all out—which the year’s 66 best tracks certainly demonstrate. Whether they’re disco screamers, candy-paint EDM nightmares, queasy mutant love ballads, or mind-melting trance

THUMP's 20 Best Mixes of 2016

2016 was a great year for losing yourself in the delirium of a great DJ mix. Online radio surged, crate-digging selectors brought their geekily obsessive sets to festival main stages, and countless wonderful records and new tools came out, giving all sorts of DJs new reasons to hop behind the decks and kick out a few jams. From nails-on-the-chalkboard experimental club music, to dusty house edits of 50 Cent, to

Daily VICE: Rapper Anik Khan Shows Us Around Astoria

On this episode of ‘Daily VICE,’ we meet up with Bengali-born hip-hop artist Anik Khan in his Astoria neighborhood. We talk to the rapper about emigrating from Bangladesh at the age of four, get a tour of the community that raised him, and sit in on a studio session as he records his new album.

Criminal Investigation Launched into Cause of Deadly Oakland Warehouse Blaze

Photo by A criminal investigation has been launched into the cause of the fire at a warehouse party in Oakland that left at least 36 people dead this weekend. At a press conference this morning the Oakland Battalion Chief, Melinda Drayton, said that the death toll of the fire at the Ghost Ship venue in the Fruitvale neighborhood has risen to 36 and that it could rise higher still. “We

The Vice Interview: Lars Ulrich Almost Became a Professional Tennis Player

Lars Ulrich. Photo by Ross Halfin This is the VICE Interview. Each week, we ask a different famous and/or interesting person the same set of questions in a bid to peek deep into his or her psyche. I meet Metallica’s Lars Ulrich in a definitely not-very-metal situation—in a two-story suite at London’s Connaught Hotel, complete with chandelier, gilt tray of tea and cookies, and a fancy bowl of fruit. The